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Saturday, February 13, 2016

Ham Biscuits inspired by The Walking Dead

Ham Biscuits | #DeadEats: Recipes Inspired by The Walking Dead
It's day 6 of Dead Eats: Recipes Inspired by The Walking Dead, and I'm super excited to be sharing a recipe inspired by the man of many profound sayings and one magical mullet—Dr. Eugene Porter. But first let me say - ONE MORE DAY 'TIL GO TIME! I've had a blast with Kim and Dionne this week, cooking up TWD-inspired food.

Okay, on to today's recipe. This reference is easy to miss, because the line slips out of Eugene's mouth as he and Tara are walking into the "doctor's office" in Alexandria. As they come through the door, we hear Eugene say "It hams my biscuits is all".

He's referring to the fact that the town plans on turning the building with the largest amount of space into a church instead of making better use of it by turning it into "a lab, a machine shop, very least a sweet-ass game room".
Eugene from The Walking Dead
This is totally fitting since they are in Virginia, the place where I first tried and fell head-over-heels for ham biscuits (and sweet potato ham biscuits). And my family was only to happy to see me making a batch of what are probably our favorite biscuits...light, flaky, buttery angel biscuits. This is basically that same recipe, but perfect if you don't want to make a huge portion of dough. I scaled down my usual recipe to make an even dozen. Be sure to leave space between the biscuits when you put them in the pan if you want them to spread as big as a cat's head (aka cathead biscuits)!

Cathead Ham Biscuits
Split one of these soft, fluffy angel biscuits (as big as a cat's head) open and stuff it with country ham for a traditional Southern breakfast.
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Ham Biscuits | #DeadEats: Recipes Inspired by The Walking Dead
by Heather Schmitt-Gonzalez
Prep Time: 20 minutes + 2 hours in fridge
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Keywords: bake bread breakfast American Southern

Ingredients (serves 12)
  • 1/4 cup lukewarm water (110° F)
  • 1 1/8 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons + 1/2 teaspoon sugar, divided
  • 313 grams (~2 1/2 cups) all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 1 cup cold buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • 12 (1/4-inch thick) slices country ham, or to taste
Combine water, yeast, and 1/2 teaspoon of the sugar in a small bowl and let stand until creamy, ~5 minutes.

Whisk the flour, remaining sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda together in a large bowl. Add the cubed butter and use a spoon or knife to drop the shortening into the bowl in little blobs. Use a pastry blender (or your finger tips) to combine everything until crumbly.

Add the yeast mixture and the buttermilk to the bowl, stirring with a wooden spoon, just until combined and no dry bits remain. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours, but up to 5 days.

Preheat oven to 400° F.

Turn dough out onto a floured work surface and knead a few times. Gently pat the dough into a circle that is 1/2-inch in thickness. Fold the dough in half. Pat it out in the same manner and fold it again. Pat it out one more time and use a 2-inch round cutter (push straight down and do not twist) to cut out biscuits and place them into a 12-inch cast skillet; there should be a little space between each biscuit - they will rise and spread to fill all of this space while they are in the oven, turning as big as a cat's head (the more space between the biscuits, the larger they will get).
angel biscuit dough
Reroll the scraps and continue to cut more biscuits until you have 12 (that should be all of the dough). Brush the top of the dough with the melted butter.

Slide into preheated oven and bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

Split the biscuits in half and fill each one with a slice (or more) of ham and enjoy!
Ham Biscuits | #DeadEats: Recipes Inspired by The Walking Dead

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